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2017 Webster Lecture “Conflict Resolution: How Multiple Sensor Modalities Combine in Animal Flight Control”

Tom Daniel
Professor of Biology
Joan & Richard Komen Endowed Chair
University of Washington

The 2017 Dale Webster Lecture is at 4:00 pm on Wednesday, April 26 in The McCormick Tribune Conference Center Auditorium on the Illinois Tech Mies (Main) Campus. This annual event features Tom Daniel of the University of Washington (UW) and honors our friend Dale Webster, professor emeritus of biology at Illinois Tech.

Daniel is the Joan and Richard Komen Endowed Chair of Biology at UW, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a MacArthur Fellow (the “genius grant” award). He also is director of the Air Force Center of Excellence on Nature Inspired Flight Technologies and Ideas, co-director of the UW Institute on Neuroengineering, a co-principal investigator for the UW Institute of Data Science and for the UW Moore-Sloan Data Science program, and an award-winning teacher. He received his Ph.D. in biology from Duke and did postdoctoral work at Caltech.

Daniel was trained in both biology and engineering and has worked at the intersection of these fields for more than 35 years. His research and teaching meld neuroscience, engineering, computing, and biomechanics to understand the control and dynamics of movement in biology. At UW, he holds adjunct appointments in the departments of computer science and engineering, mechanical engineering and bioengineering, and he is a member of the neuroscience faculty.

Daniel will speak on “Conflict Resolution: How Multiple Sensor Modalities Combine in Animal Flight Control.” In this talk, Daniel will discuss how all flying creatures acquire and process information from a large number of sensory inputs including vision and touch that encode positions, motions, and forces. Maintaining control in animal flight with flapping propulsion is inherently difficult, demanding exquisite sensory processing. Daniel will review novel sensory information pathways to flight control, how different types of senses individually contribute to movement control, and how we may develop a mechanistic approach to understanding the contributions of these separate different types of senses. Daniel will focus on a natural behavior in hawkmoths, a model system for studies of sensory processing.

The lecture will be followed by a reception.

Wednesday, April 26

Time & Location
Lecture - MTCC Auditorium, 4:00 pm
Reception- MTCC Ballroom, 5:00-6:30 pm

Lauren Shelby: 312.567.5030 |